MS, Multiple Sclerosis, Exercise, Dietary, Physio

Exercise for Multiple Sclerosis…..and a bit more

We started our Exercise and Dietary programme for MS patients back in November 2017. We began with initial assessments whereby we spent time with people living with the condition. Exercise for Multiple Sclerosis is a key component of managing the neurological change. However it is not a stand alone requirement. Maintaining energy levels or combatting fatigue are a daily battle. We heard from contributors living with MS about the many challenges they face – and we also had a laugh…it’s not all misery!

The Challenge for healthcare providers

The challenge for healthcare professionals is to understand the condition in a multi factorial way. It is most important that the medical side communicates with the specialist neurological input. In turn it is imperative that both link in with the therapeutic services available. The golden nugget is that all work in tandem – wishful thinking? I don’t see why not. At Personal Health, we are communicating regularly with our local GPs and a number of innovative Neurologists who see great value in a community based approach.

The Challenge for the MS population

In clinic we have heard from a small section of the MS population about job related stress, family and relationship issues, emotional and physical fatigue. While lifting some dumbbells we have addressed fear, anxiety and resentment. We address fears around deterioration in general health (over a chocolate digestive or two). Generally though we just turn up regularly and allow the crew do their thing. They exercise with determination, question with a healthy scepticism and cut us in two with a sharp wit.

Shared experiences are positive

In Personal Health, our team includes physiotherapy, occupational therapy and a dietitian. We share the workload and our collective experience is working well together. For the participants, they are working pretty well together too. Physical issues from compromised vision to manual dexterity and urinary urgency are on the table – discretely. While nobody is shouting the roof down, there is comfort in shared knowledge and experience. There is comfort in laughter and comfort in the handrails on the wall. There is a strange comfort in Mark’s dulcet tones of instruction or Marion’s dodgy Spotify playlist. Most importantly there is a sense of empowerment about taking on MS for the participants.

Benefits and outcomes

We measure change in clinic based on our initial assessments. There is not always an improvement. Similarly there has been very little decline. With a progressive condition one of the best outcomes can be maintenance of the status quo. In our profession, there is a big emphasis on ‘outcome measures’ whereby data is used to measure clinical changes. This gives people feedback around changes in strength, endurance, fatigue and balance amongst other things. It gives us quantitative feedback too and in general the results have been rewarding for all concerned. We are all on this journey together, and it has been a great learning experience to date.

 

Exercise, fitness, ageing, arthritis, Lifestyle, Dublin 6

Motion is Lotion – the benefits of exercise for the over 70’s

All the big Consultants we know very regularly use the phrase ‘wear and tear’! It’s a gentle way of talking about the decline of our once glorious body. Arthritis is not curable but it is absolutely manageable. The trick is to exercise correctly while simultaneously not antagonising the inflammatory joint. Movement is key and motion is lotion!

The over 70s lifestyle

A great number of our patients are of a certain age …. but who’s counting right?

What we can confirm apart from dubious birth certificates is that they are a smiling, well oiled vintage. Many of them are golfers, almost all of them are regular walkers. Some join exercise groups dotted around the community. These people are living busy lives, booking concert tickets on the Ipad, gardening and loving the sport on TV. The Grandchildren are beautiful but exhausting, and often that mayhem is followed by a well deserved glass of wine. Lets’s not forget the odd holiday or three … Vitamin D is good for the joints, the skin and the soul.

Motion is Lotion

There is one shared quality among this group who cross our threshold in Personal Health.

They are keeping active. A former P.E teacher from my schooldays had a phrase referring to healthy joints; ‘Motion is Lotion’. This was as relevant for teenage kids as it is now for the ageing population.  It makes perfect physiological sense. Regular activity at any age helps circulation within our joints. An oxygenated blood flow swishing it’s way through our spine, shoulders, hips and knees is all good news. But it is particularly relevant when we are getting older.

Move More or Move Less? ….Move Clever….

Movement, Hips, Arthritis, exercise, Fitness, Dublin, ageing

The magic of Jimenez…..aaaaaaannnd Stretch !!

With regular movement our joints begin to move more freely – regardless of previous injury or medical diagnosis. Let’s take the hip as an example. It is a joint that regularly succumbs to arthritic change as we get older. The natural tendency is to move less with arthritis present in the joint. This is often due to pain while weight bearing. It is a perfectly natural reaction to move less. Unfortunately this is the completely wrong thing to do and means the joint will only deteriorate quicker. We need to start moving clever without impacting the damaged part of the joint.

Non Impact Movement

One of the best remedies for joint pain is to move the joint in a non weight bearing way. Cycling (indoor exercise bikes or outdoors in the park) allows the hip joint to move without compressing the ‘wear and tear’ we referred to previously. Most importantly, it strengthens and lengthens the muscles that surround the joint. It is a positive cycle whereby the blood flow helps lubricate the joint. This in turn eases inflammation. As soon as we have facilitated greater movement, the joint has greater range. This means the muscles protecting the joint automatically get stronger while stretching and contracting with greater activity.

The Money Deal – How much??

We provide 4 exercise classes and a healthy living workshop every month for €99. We are all Healthcare professionals so your insurance will cover at least half of this if not more.

So €99 can very easily become

€50 for 5 appointments with a healthcare professional once you have your receipts in order (which we will promptly provide).

Surely not I hear you say!

The Solution

Get active!! If you would like to choose Personal Health as your option, we will be waiting with open arms. There are comfy seats and tea on tap (post exercise) to recover and recuperate. We always have time for a few chats too. Hopefully see you soon!

Diabetes, Fitness, Exercise, Physio, Dietary, Dublin 6, Rathmines

The Personal Health Diabetes Programme

Everybody is scared at the start when it comes to embarking on a new journey! The Personal Health Diabetes programme is no different. We thought we were gentle, approachable, understanding and compassionate people!! But what we didn’t consider was that people with Type 2 Diabetes are petrified about making small changes in their lifestyle. Most participants have waited for years before contemplating and finally making some small changes. But they are all delighted once they start and most comment that they wish it happened sooner.

Guilt and Stigma

When we have got to know our participants after a few weeks, often people have mentioned carrying a guilt and stigma with them for developing a condition like Type 2 Diabetes. The condition is lifestyle related, so they feel they have let themselves down in some way. The reality here is that feelings of guilt and stigma are futile. What is important is to take action now and make small but attainable changes to your lifestyle. Former Chair of International Diabetes Federation, Dr Tony O’Sullivan has visited us here to assess the Personal Health Diabetes programme and was impressed, commenting  ‘This programme is suitable for anyone living with diabetes and will really contribute to better control of the condition’.

Sociable and Friendly

Our participants are a lovely sociable gang. 

Diabetes, Health, Fitness, Exercise, Dublin 6, Rathmines

They meet regularly on Tuesday afternoons in clinic and despite the chats and giggles, they get their work done. The fitness levels, size and shape differs from person to person but all are accommodated. The one non negotiable is that they do some good honest work, ending up a little sweaty and breathless (don’t worry nobody crawls out the door!).

What does Type 2 Diabetes programme involve?

Mark Hynes (Chartered Physiotherapist) is running the Type 2 Diabetes programme along with our Dietitian Caoimhe O’Leary. They are doing a brilliant job! 

Dietary, Dietitian, Diabetes          Diabetes, Fitness, Exercise, Physio, Dietary, Dublin 6, Rathmines

The programme involves turning up on Tuesday afternoons at 5pm. Once an initial screening is complete the client is cleared for progress and the fun begins. The exercise classes (4 per month) last approximately 40 minutes in total. Caoimhe also runs a monthly workshop discussing practical and non sacrificial changes to enable healthy eating.

What are the benefits?

Some people choose to test their progress every few months and this has given participants great feedback.  Some see changes in blood sugar levels. Others experience weight loss. Most improve on strength scores and stability. Others feel steadier on their feet and more confident. Most describe greater energy levels. Crucially, as healthcare professionals we see a group reducing the risks associated with the condition. It is a hugely rewarding experience for all concerned.

What do I wear, what do I do, what happens in general??

People tend to arrive a few minutes beforehand in comfortable, exercise clothing. For those arriving from work , there are clean and spacious changing rooms with showers and storage. During each class there is a warm up , some strength training, balance and co-ordination tasks, some short sharp bursts of activity (High Intensity Intervals), some stretching and functional movements, and plenty of advice about pacing yourself. Turn up people! You’ll be glad you did!

Cholesterol, heart, diet, dietitian, food, health, fitness

Lowering Your Cholesterol The Healthy Way – Caoimhe O’Leary

Have you had your cholesterol checked?

More people die in Ireland today from heart disease than any other illness. It accounts for 36% of deaths in Ireland. The positive news is that 80% of the incidence of heart disease can be prevented by improving lifestyle factors. Unfortunately, we are not in control of other risk factors such as age, gender and genetic predisposition to illness. We are however in control of modifiable risk factors such as cholesterol, blood pressure and smoking and if taken care of we can reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

Get your cholesterol and blood pressure checked!

Cholesterol is a waxy substance of which 75% is produced by the liver and 25% can be found in certain foods.

It is essential in producing all the body’s cells and hormones, and is needed to make vitamin D and bile for digestion.  However, when your blood has too much cholesterol this can stick to the walls of arteries. A build-up of cholesterol in the arteries, narrows the arteries restricting the amount of blood flow to the brain and heart. This can eventually cause a blockage leading to a heart attack or stroke.

Lipoproteins

Cholesterol is carried in the blood attached to proteins called lipoproteins. There are two main lipoproteins: LDL (low density lipoprotein) and HDL (high density lipoprotein). Too much LDL is unhealthy therefore it is referred to as bad cholesterol and should be kept low. HDL is protective however and helps to remove LDL cholesterol. HDL is known as the good cholesterol and should be kept high.

What do the numbers mean?

One of the best ways of taking control of your cholesterol is through a healthy diet and physical activity.

Choosing a healthy diet low in saturated fat (butter, cream, cheese, coconut oil, palm oil, lard, fatty meat, processed meats, confectionary foods) is one way of reducing your cholesterol levels. Aim to consume less than 20g saturated fat per day to help to reduce your LDL cholesterol. When reading food-labels avoid anything more than 5g saturated fat per 100g.

It’s not all about cutting out the bad stuff – the good news is that there are foods you can introduce into your diet that will also help to lower your cholesterol levels.

  • Nuts – with their positive nutrient profile of fibre, falvonoids and monounsaturated fats, have been shown to lower cholesterol by 3-7.5%. They reduce the risk of heart disease by 37% . Aim for 30g unsalted almonds, pecans, pistachios, walnuts or peanuts per day.

 

  • Soluble fibre – found in fruit, vegetables, oats, beans and pulses. It can lower LDL cholesterol by 5-20% if you consume 15-20g per day. Increase foods containing oat beta – glucan (porridge, oatbran, oatcakes, porridge bread)  and other wholegrains, beans and pulses (aim for 80-100g per day).

 

  • Oil rich fish – a rich source of unsaturated fats especially omega 3 which have heart protective benefits. Aim to have 1-2 servings (140g) per week – salmon, sardines, mackerel, kipper, trout, anchovies, eel, pilchards, fresh tuna, sprats, whitebait, whiting. Other healthy fats include olive oil, rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, corn oil, avocado, olives, nuts and seeds.

 

  • As always recommended, increase your fruit and vegetables to 5-7 portions per day. A portion is approximately 80g per day. Consumption of at least 400g fruit and vegetables per day has been associated with lower incidence of heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, cancer and obesity. They are low in calories, high in phytonutrients, soluble fibre, antioxidants and vitamins and minerals.

 

  • Plant stanols or sterols are structurally similar to cholesterol and are naturally found in a wide range of foods such as nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. They mimic cholesterol and compete with it for absorption. Most diets provide a small amount of plant stanols/sterols (approx 300mg for average person, or 600mg for those on vegetarian diets) however an intake of 1.5-2.4g per day has been shown to reduce cholesterol by 7-10% over 2-3 weeks. Always check with your GP if you are taking medication for your cholesterol.

 

  • Soya foods – consumption of 15g-25g soya protein daily has been scientifically proven to lower LDL cholesterol by 4-10%. Include more soya products in the diet such as soya beans, soya yoghurts, soya  milk, tofu, edamame beans.

 

For further information on cholesterol and diet why not attend a cholesterol workshop at Personal Health Rathmines carried out by Consultant Dietitian Caoimhe McDonald where she will provide you with practical tips on a cholesterol lowering diet in a supportive environment.

Next Cholesterol Workshop Date: Wednesday 12th April 7-8pm

Book your place now at 01-4964002

Dietitian, Dublin 6, Caoimhe McDonald

Take control of your IBS don’t let it control you – By Caoimhe Mc Donald

Dietitian, Dublin 6, Caoimhe McDonald

“Take control of your IBS don’t let it control you”   

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic and relapsing bowel disorder. It affects up to 20% of adults and adolescents as well as children. It is 1.5 times more common in women than in men.  Symptoms include:

Dietitian, Dublin 6, Caoimhe McDonald

  • abdominal pain
  • bloating
  • constipation
  • diarrhoea
  • flatulence
  • poor appetite
  • indigestion

It is important to note that many conditions have symptoms that can mimic IBS. Inflammatory bowel disease, coeliac disease and microscopic colitis are a few. It is important that the diagnosis of IBS has been carried out, coeliac disease has been ruled-out and alarm features are absent.

Many people have had symptoms of IBS all their lives and done nothing about it. It is so often put down to having “a sensitive tummy”. As a Dietitian, I would estimate 60 – 70% of my patients suffer with IBS. It is very common for people to come to a dietitian for a different reason and drop it into conversation when discussing their diet. People wonder how it has become so much more common these days. However, when asked about their family history many report one or both of their parents have avoided a food for years as it “doesn’t agree with them”. 

Irritable Bowel, Dietitian, Rathmines

The truth is, more people feel comfortable discussing their digestive health and doing something about it. People live busy lives that can often be stressful and many are now more conscious of their diet and looking after their health. I have seen patients with such severe symptoms it has a huge impact on their quality of life. They are unable to attend work, they fear getting public transport, avoid social activities or not sleeping at night as a result. Why live with something like this when symptoms can be managed effectively?

Multifactorial

The exact cause of IBS is not known and it is thought to be multifactorial. Suggested causes may be; a previous gastrointestinal infection, prolonged antibiotic use, stress, medication, alcohol, poor diet and lifestyle factors. Two thirds of IBS patients perceive their symptoms are related to food. Symptoms can come and go and may be exacerbated in stressful situations which can make it difficult to identify the exact triggers.

So how do people go about managing their symptoms of IBS?

Dietitian, Dublin 6, Caoimhe McDonald

  • Medical management using anti-diarrhoeals, anti-spasmodics, laxatives or low dose antidepressants
  • Self-help – 7% treat themselves with no medical supervision
  • Herbal remedies
  • Psychological guidance
  • Probiotics
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Dietary guidance

Diet assessment and adjustment by a qualified dietitian is so important in the management of IBS. Many patients prefer dietary management rather than a reliance on medication. As a dietitian specialising in digestive health, it is very rewarding to see a patients’ symptoms improve. With guidance on diet, meal pattern, lifestyle factors and stress management, people will notice improvements. Some may immediately feel better after increasing fibre in the diet, increasing fluid and introducing exercise. Others may find eliminating certain foods beneficial or the use of a probiotic.

FODMAP Diet

There is a growing interest in restriction of short chain fermentable carbohydrates called FODMAPs (fermentable, oligosaccharides, disaccharides, mono-saccharides and polyols….a mouthful I know!) for IBS management. The low FODMAP diet is an exclusion diet specifically for patients with IBS which has been supported by 30 clinical studies. Research has shown that limiting these foods (high in FODMAPS) can alleviate the symptoms associated with IBS.  The low FODMAP diet should be done under the supervision of a dietitian as exclusion diets are at risk of nutritional inadequacy.

If you feel you could benefit from seeing a dietitian in relation to digestive health or any other dietary issue contact Caoimhe McDonald at Personal Health. Caoimhe has worked with patients with IBS for years and can help you identify the triggers for your IBS. Caoimhe will provide meal suggestions, recipes and shopping lists to make sure your diet is still balanced and you are getting all the nutrients you need.

In Conclusion, diet is not always the cause. It can be just one contributing factor to IBS. For many, stress management may be the best solution. Contact the Personal Health team to make an appointment with Consultant Dietitian Caoimhe McDonald or Psychotherapist Susan Duffy on 01 4964002.

Personal Health, Rather Road, Chronic Health intervention

Surprise Your Bones….

Exercise for Osteoporosis

Medically Led Fitness

Responsible Exercise for Osteoperosis

When I was training as a student in Cork University Hospital our lead Clinical Educator, Fiona, had a stock phrase for helping patients with Osteoporosis.

‘Surprise your Bones’ said Fiona regularly, in a gentle Scottish lilt. Whether it was her accent or it’s ‘catchiness’, the phrase seemed to stick!

Fiona was a Clinical Specialist in the area and really believed in the positive benefits of exercise for Osteoporosis. The tricky part is knowing what are the correct exercises, what are the safe ones and what needs to be avoided. The even trickier part is making a class relevant/enjoyable to a 60 year old lady. We know you would rather be on the golf course or anywhere else!

Medically Led Fitness Osteoperosis Classes

Exercise can be responsible and good fun

Personal Health Exercise Classes

At Personal Health, our Chartered Physiotherapists manage a nice happy medium in this class. We aim for the whole thing to be enjoyable, sociable and challenging enough to ‘surprise the bones’ into shape.

Typically Osteoporosis affects females far more than males, usually over the age of 55. It is diagnosed by DEXA scan which is able to measure bone density. This is usually through imaging of the hip bone.

For those managing Osteoporosis it tends to be a quiet process. There’s typically no pain, and one might only be alerted to it’s complexities when in the A&E room after something has caused a fracture.

Areas such as the base of the thumb/ wrist and hip are more vulnerable for fracture. This is based on the age and activity profile of those diagnosed with the disease. Similarly a focussed approach to improving balance and/or falls prevention can be a smart way to approach the condition.

Frequently an osteoporotic patient will be undergoing ‘medical’ management of the condition by taking prescribed tablets –  ’Calcichew’- or something similar. It has various classifications in terms of severity. Often patients opt for a sustained (but finite) period of injection therapy as treatment. These injections aim to increase the strength of cortical bone structure in addition to the focussed dietary and exercise interventions.

Personal Health Dublin 6

Chronic disease is just a definition not a life sentence

Medically Led Fitness

In Personal Health our Medically Led Fitness programmes are geared towards optimising chronic health issues. By definition, ‘chronic’ relates to time and duration – not severity.

So with a chronic diagnosis like Osteoporosis, you have the power to successfully thrive. At Personal Health, we provide a helping hand, some time and a refreshing enjoyable approach to managing your chronic health issue.

Balanced approach to your Personal Health

Redress the Balance……By Susan Duffy Counselling Psychotherapist

As a counselling psychotherapist I meet a lot of people who are struggling with the balancing act of life; workload, children, ageing parents, relationship and friends are among the many responsibilities we try to juggle daily. All of this juggling on a regular basis before even thinking about ourselves, our diet, fitness and general health.

Media and social media can appear full of ‘successful’ people. Supposedly  ‘just like us’ but with perfectly toned bodies, a stellar career and beautifully turned out children. They run marathons before breakfast and roll out a Nigella style roast for 20 close friends at lunch. If we compare ourselves it can be hard not to feel overwhelmed.

  • Are we coming up short….?
  • Or could these images be constructed with ‘perfection’ styling before we clap eyes on the finished product?
Dublin 6 mental health services

As resilient as a bubble or……

feeling tired and depressed

….A spent force?

 

Impacts on our Health

All of the above add to feelings of overwhelm, anxiety and just not being enough. When we are spinning plates and have such high expectations of ourselves, something’s got to give. Usually because we are busy with work and trying to live up to the perceived expectations of others, the first thing to give is our health and our self-care.

If we are tired, feeling depleted and ragged, it shows in our work and relationships. We can feel demotivated and under-appreciated in work. Anger and resentment can be directed towards loved ones taking us for granted. The basic concept of caring for ourselves in a healthy way underpins how well and whole-heartedly we can care for others, and do our jobs to the best of our abilities.

Surely the correlation between stressed, overworked individuals who strive for perfection and their incidence of back pain, is too high to be a coincidence?

Could it be possible that our tired unsupported bodies are screaming at us to look after them. Sometimes the physical pain we feel can be a symptom of something deeper emotionally. Ironically, lower backs (lumbar spinal) often seem to ‘go’ around stressful landmark life events, when we feel least ‘supported’.

Pausing to ask what your body feels like in this moment, could be the first step in your journey to appropriate self care.

  • What do you truly need right now? (as opposed to what you ‘should’ be doing).
Counselling for Health

What’s going on in there..

It could be deciding to talk to someone about the stressors in your life. What impacts on your relationships and general health?

It could mean taking a step towards a stronger healthier body through exercise, diet or relaxation.

Regardless of detail, pursuing something suitable, exclusively for you, can help positive change.

Come and ask Personal Health how we can help……it’s time to redress your Personal Health balance….

Thanks,

Susan

Polycystic, Ovarian, Cancer, Physio, Diet

Women’s Health – Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Women’s Health

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a relatively common condition that affects how a woman’s ovaries work. It is a condition where a number of cysts develop around the edge of the ovaries (polycystic ovaries) in addition to one or more other symptoms.

 

PCOS Caoimhe2

 

SYMPTOMS

Irregular or absent periods
Excessive hair growth
Thinning of scalp hair
Acne
Difficulty maintaining a healthy body weight
Elevated testosterone levels
Fertility problems
Insulin resistance

Approximately one in five women has polycystic ovaries. In addition, approximately one in ten has PCOS to some degree.

Long term health concerns associated with PCOS include heart disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and diabetes. Being overweight, having high cholesterol or high blood pressure increases this risk. As a result, up to 60% of women with PCOS are overweight or obese. 50-70% of women with PCOS also have insulin resistance.

 

PCOS Caoimhe1

PCOS cannot be cured but the symptoms can be managed through diet and lifestyle. Healthy eating and being active can improve your PCOS symptoms and reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

In overweight women, the symptoms of PCOS can greatly improve by losing that excess weight. Furthermore, losing weight will reduce the amount of insulin your body needs to produce. As a result, your testosterone levels are reduced and your chance of ovulation improves. Many women with PCOS have difficulty with losing weight. This is where professional advice from a Dietitian will help. Gradual weight loss of 5-7% can restore ovulation, along with decreasing excessive hair growth and reducing acne.

The type and quantity of carbohydrate can influence insulin resistance. The Glycaemic index is a ranking system which shows how quickly your blood glucose rises after eating carbohydrate foods. Low GI diets and increasing physical activity can be useful to reduce the symptoms of PCOS due to improving insulin levels.

PCOS Caoimhe 3

How can Personal Health help you to improve your symptoms of PCOS?

In conclusion, our team of Dietitian’s and Chartered Physiotherapists can assist and help you by;

  • identifying your specific nutritional needs
  • providing dietary and lifestyle advice tailored to you
  • helping you to lose weight, if you are in the overweight category, through diet and exercise
  • providing dietary advice if you are planning a pregnancy
  • developing tailored resources such as recipes, meal plans, shopping lists to help you to achieve your goals
  • and finally, providing encouragement and motivation in a supportive, non-judgemental environment

PCOS Caoimhe4

To find out more:

Phone: 01 4964002

Email: info@personalhealth.ie

www.personalhealth.ie

Pregnancy, Constipation, Diet, Physiotherapy

Constipation is a Common Problem During Pregnancy…

Constipation is a Common Problem During Pregnancy

 

mkblog7

This may be due to:

  • Your pregnancy producing an increase in the hormone progesterone, which relaxes smooth muscles throughout the body, including the digestive tract. This means that food passes through the intestines more slowly.
  • Your expanding uterus, takes up valuable space normally occupied by your bowel, which may also add to congestion.
  • Also the iron-containing prenatal vitamins you’re taking may also contribute – but stopping them is a bad idea, for you and your baby.

8 Tips To Try To Ease The Problem…

  1. Pelvic Floor Relaxation

mkblog6

  • Inadequate pelvic floor relaxation and release with bowel emptying is one of the major causes of constipation.
  • During bowel emptying the pelvic floor muscles provide a firm platform of support.
  • Regular pelvic floor exercises are essential to improve pelvic floor support. (See page on pelvic floor exercises)
  • Pelvic Floor relaxation is promoted by bulging the low abdomen forward with relaxed deep breathing.

 

2. Ideal Toilet Techniques:

 

mkblog5

 

  • When you first feel the urge to empty your bowels, do so at the earliest convenient time.
  • Allow sufficient time to empty you bowel, try not to rush.
  • Sometimes the simple action of taking 5-6 deep breaths can help relax the pelvic floor and facilitate bowel opening.
  • If you find that after 2 or 3 minutes of relaxed breathing and sitting on the toilet that your bowels do not open then get up and return to your daily activities and return to the toilet when you feel the next urge.
  • Sitting on the toilet for long periods without an urge can increase the likelihood of straining the pelvic floor.

 

3.    Ideal Position For Bowel Movement

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  • Sit on the toilet seat, never hover above the seat.
  • Place a small stool under your feet to mimic a squat position.
  • If you are out and about and you have no stool lift your heel off the ground. The key is that you want your knees higher than your hips.
  • Lean forward at your hips with a straight back.
  • Place your elbows on your knees.
  • Make your waist wide and bulge your abdominals out as this opens up the pelvic floor.
  • Push down and back into your back passage.
  • Breath out or make a noise as you push out.
  • Don’t push too hard. (Scale of 1-10, push at 5-7).
  • This technique relaxes and opens the anal sphincter to allow the bowel movement to pass.
  • Lift and squeeze your pelvic floor muscles when finished.

 

  4.Exercise:

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  • Regular exercise helps to stimulate bowel movements.
  • Low impact exercise such as pre/post natal Pilates, walking and cycling is ideal.
  • Be mindful of avoiding exercises with the potential to overload and strain the pelvic floor.

 

 5.Diet

If your stool is too hard, it will be very difficult to pass!

MKblog2

       Good stool consistency requires:

  • Adequate Fibre intake (30grams/day), don’t make the mistake of consuming too much fibre as this can overload the system.
  • Gradually introduce whole-grain foods.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables (raw or lightly cooked preferably with skin left on), dried fruits.
  • Greens (broccoli, spinach, green beans, cabbage).
  • Small Regular meals: Big meals can overtax your digestive tract. Try eating six mini-meals a day rather than three large ones.

 

 6.Fluids 

MK BLog1

  • Eight full glasses of fluids (water, vegetable or fruit juice, broth etc.) each day.
  • Warm liquids such as, hot water and lemon

 

      7.Supplement

  • Ask your GP about adding high-powered fiber to your diet, such as wheat-bran or psyllium.

 

       8.Probiotic acidophilus

  • Found in yogurts that contain active cultures — stimulate the intestinal bacteria to break down food better, aiding the digestive tract in its efforts to keep things moving.

 

How can Personal Health Help Mums to be?

Exercise:

  • Medically Led Fitness 30 Min Classes-Modified by our Physiotherapists for pregnancy
  • Pre Natal Pilates & Yoga classes led by Chartered physiotherapists and Midwives: see here for schedules and prices:

http://personalhealth.ie/clinical-pathways/medically-led-fitness/

 

Dietary Choices:

 

Book an appointment with our Consultant Dietitian:

Caoimhe McDonald(MINDI)

 

 

Call us to find out more.

Phone: 01 496 4002

Email: info@personalhealth.ie

Website: www.persoanlhealth.ie

The Very Real And Emotional Struggles Of Having A Fitbit (Or Does Your Fitbit Have You?)

The Very Real And Emotional Struggles Of Having A Fitbit (Or Does Your Fitbit Have You?)

My Fitbit journey began a month ago. I had plagued my husband with hints of getting me one and well, yes to my own disbelief, he actually must have listened, as one day he arrived home with one for me!

I was thrilled or so I thought but very quickly I began to realise, I didn’t own this Fitbit……..this Fitbit owns me! This is what happens when you let a Fitbit into your life:

You live for the sole purpose of getting to you daily Fitbit goals:

Waiting for that little buzz when you get to 10,000 steps and then pathetically self-high-five-ing is perhaps the least glamorous moment of your day.

fitbit steps nailed

 

You get angry if you don’t have it on when you walk:

If you walk without wearing your Fitbit, does it even count as walking? I know there is no logic to this. I do know that. But on days when you happen to forget your Fitbit, you wonder why you even bothered getting out of bed in the first place. If Fitbit isn’t counting them, are these steps even real? Is anything?

no fitbit don't move

 

Fitbit’s validation becomes more important than the opinions of human beings:

IT LIKES ME. IT REALLY LIKES ME. Oh, whoa, did I get fired? It’s cool, I got 11,000 steps today so I’m pretty much crushing it-whoop!

Fitbit-meme-not-crazy-just-Fitbitting

 

You’re constantly jumping up and down for seemingly no reason:

Anyone who has ever stood next to me in work or while waiting to cross the road or in the queue at Tesco’s have probably been only one step away from calling to get me committed.

5a2ba85b3a223e7c8354eff5b53f0632

 

You have jumping marathons before you go to bed:

Nothing is more unbearable than the idea of resting your head on a pillow when you’re at 9,000 steps. Time to wake up all the neighbours!!

bed fitbit

 

(If Im being brutally honest, I have had evenings where I’ve got me children to wear it for an hour or two before they go to bed to get me to my target while I put the feet up. I’m just being a good mother and encouraging them to be active-right??!)

 

 

Your worst enemy is yourself:

One day I reached 30,000 steps in one day & the my Fitbit sent a text to my phone telling me I was an “Overachiever”. I told everyone I met that day just how great I was! My husband & children couldn’t bare to be in the same room as me! An overachiever at last!! But then it dawned on me, that the only way I’d ever feel this good about myself again was by topping it, and there are only 24 hours in a day. Can we use all of them for stepping??-NO. Will we try anyway?? CATCH ME IF YOU CAN.

 

nailed fitbit

 

The American Heart Association uses the 10,000 steps metric as a guideline to follow for improving health and decreasing risk of heart disease, the number one killer of men and women in America.

How do I fit all that walking into my busy day?- Here’s a few tips:

  • get off the bus early and walk the rest of the way home or to work
  • walk to the station instead of taking the car or bus
  • take the stairs instead of the lift, or walk up escalators
  • walk the children to school, whatever the weather
  • get a dog- they really help get you out and about and reach those 10,00 steps

How Can Personal Health help you reach your 10,000 steps per day?

Attend one of our 30 minute Medically Led fitnesses classes-

Personal Health’s 30 min fitness classes are designed and implemented by our medically qualified team. Classes vary from session to session. This variety provides a greater all round level of fitness and flexibility and most importantly, it keeps classes interesting and fun. Suitable for all fitness levels.

To see schedule & Book visit our website now….www.personalhealth.ie

 

 

 

Phone: 01 496 4002

Email: info@personalhealth.ie

Website: www.persoanlhealth.ie